The mortgage consultant shares tips on how to become an authority on mortgages
Yvette Clermont’s first mortgage experience was terrible. It was 1997, and she was shopping around for her first home. Unfortunately, the lender Clermont was referred to gave her no direction, no assistance, and made her feel like a waste of their time.
“I made a promise I would never do that to someone coming to me for help,” Clermont (pictured) said. “I have built my business always remembering that if someone wants to buy a home, then it’s my job to show them how. Not everyone is ready at first, but I can help by giving people steps to achieve their homeownership goals.”
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Now 22 years into a career that she describes as one incredible ride, Clermont continues to provide massive value to her clients and partners as a mortgage consultant at Inlanta Mortgage. Clermont has a reputation that marked her approach to business as extraordinary and detail-oriented.
“As a real estate broker and previously successful team leader of a high-volume real estate team, I had the opportunity to work with many mortgage professionals, and I have to say without reservation that Yvette and her team take the top spot,” said Realty Partners founder and CEO Thomas Heimann, who worked with Clermont.
Clermont’s strong focus on continuous learning is also one of the reasons that makes her a top loan officer. She shared with MPA how becoming a certified mortgage planning specialist gave her the competitive edge she needed to offer the highest level of service.
“I am a student of our industry,” she said. “I truly love it and cannot get enough of learning better ways to help the families I serve. Becoming a CMPS has given me the knowledge and tools needed to make better financial recommendations to home buyers and investors, as mortgages are not a one-size-fits-all commodity. A mortgage is a tool to be carefully considered, not one to just find the lowest interest rate and largest down payment. Considering the overall financial goals of the home buyer will not only get them the home but will provide them with the best financial tool for their individual needs.”
Another result of Clermont’s hard work is the unforgettable memories she gets to create with her customers.
“The most memorable loan I ever closed was a first-time home buyer in her 60s. She had come to the US 20 years ago to start a new life and truly wanted the American dream. No-one in her family had ever owned property, and she really had her mind set on becoming a homeowner. She was the hardest worker I’ve ever met. We worked together for a year to get her ready to buy a home. She had heard ‘no’ from many lenders in the past, but my job was to show her how to do it again. We met every month for a year to go over her plan, and this year she became a homeowner,” Clermont said. “We all cried at closing as it was truly an awesome thing to be a part of.”
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But not all her closing transactions had a fairy-tale ending, Clermont admits, and she always feels awful when telling her clients that their goals cannot be achieved.
“Their home is in your hands, and then a carefully crafted plan for their mortgage faces a challenge that we might not be able to fix. Sometimes it’s documentation we thought we could get that we learn we can’t; sometimes it’s something the client missed sharing that we find out about down the line, or sometimes it’s an issue with the property,” Clermont said. “I do everything in my power to ask every possible question upfront to avoid challenges down the road, but with as many moving parts and people involved, it is inevitable that occasionally, people are disappointed.”
Ultimately, what counts is that you put your heart and soul into your work, Clermont said. She knows how easy it is to get caught up in the logistics of getting to the closing or lose focus on the people and families you are working to help. So take a moment to think about the difference you can make, she advised.
“Educate yourself. Take extra classes, get your CMB and CMPS. Become an authority on mortgages and be the person others call for information. Then lead with a giving hand, and business will come to you,” Clermont said.